UX writing is considered to be one of the most important elements of creating user-friendly products. In other words, UX writing is essential to creating a good product user interface that helps the user understand how the product works.
However, not every marketer and entrepreneur may fully understand the difference between regular content writing and UX writing. Indeed, UX writing has its own rules, some of which are quite similar to content strategy writing yet very different too. Hence, here are the UX writing rules for writing and UI designing text about products.
#1 Shorten And Simplify
The most important thing about UX writing is the ability to shorten and simplify your text. Doing so allows you to create text that takes up less space while still conveying all the necessary information to your audience. You need to be concise by throwing out all the things that are redundant or not essential.
For example, instead of writing “You must do X before you can do Y”, write “Do X to do Y”. At the same time, you should avoid long blocks of text. These chunks of text look bad while also being more difficult to process because of how much fluff they contain.
#2 Focus On Action
Another tip you will definitely benefit from, especially if you use it with the tip above, is to focus on action. Every time you start writing a new piece of text, keep your objective in mind and prompt users to take the necessary action. Your text should be instructive, but it should also be actionable.
Focusing on action should also be done on a micro level when you work with sentences and phrases making up your text. Instead of starting with the process, start with the result. For instance, “To see the menu, tap on the icon” is better than “Tap on the icon to see the menu.” Try to use the present tense as much as possible and use an active voice instead of a passive one.
#3 Keep Wording In Check
Unquestionably, wording plays a huge role when it comes to UX writing. Keeping your wording in check is the key to creating effective UX texts. Here are some tips on how to do this:
- Don’t use double negatives (e.g. don’t write “I do not want to get push notifications.”)
- Use specific words when possible (e.g. use “save” and “send” instead of “manage” and “dispatch”).
- Be consistent with your wording (e.g. use the same words for specific actions wherever your text is placed, don’t combine two different forms of address in one sentence).
- Avoid using jargon (e.g. use “incorrect password” instead of “authentication error”).
- Substitute words with numerals where possible (e.g. “2 unread messages” instead of “two unread messages”).
#4 Don’t Overload With Information
As mentioned earlier, writing lengthy chunks of text can be overwhelming to your users – and you don’t want to get them overwhelmed. This is why you should always make sure not to overload your audience with information no matter what kind of piece of text you are writing.
There will be times when you need to deliver a list of instructions but keeping it short and simple is much better than trying to include every single detail. In fact, it could even be a very effective tactic to leave out some details and not show them upfront (but still include a “Read more” link).
#5 Make Specific Elements Stand Out
While it’s important not to give out too much information that could overload your users, it’s also important to identify the most important pieces from your text. Once you identify them, you will need to bring more attention to them by making these specific elements stand out.
As experts from the best research paper writing service reviews site say, “There will likely be interactive elements in your text that you need to select and clearly show what they are meant to be. Label elements correctly and choose colors to attach to them for a greater effect.”
#6 Be Careful With Humor
Some marketers tend to make one big mistake when working with UX writing is thinking about it as they would about content writing. The truth is that even though the two have their similarities, there are still quite a few differences to keep in mind. One of the major ones is obviously humor. In UX writing, you can’t use as much humor as you would in content writing – but you can still use it.
Whether you use or don’t use humor in your UX writing depends on the kind of brand image you have and the brand voice you use. If it’s more playful and friendly, using humor can work very well for humanizing your text. However, if your brand is all about being professional and serious in any given situation, it’s best to avoid humor.
#7 Keep Everything Consistent
Last but not least, you should always remember to keep everything you write as consistent as possible. As mentioned earlier, being consistent with forms of address is necessary but it’s also important to use the same terms throughout all your texts. Moreover, if you use graphics with your texts, you need to ensure that the two are consistent with each other as well.
All in all, any passionate marketer or entrepreneur can easily learn UX writing and start implementing its best practices to create great text for their products. Use the tips in this article to help you get started with UX writing as soon as possible.